NYFW 2019: Prabal Gurang
Sunday, September 8 I was invited to the Prabal Gurang runway show. I own a few pieces, not many, of Prabal and was excited to see their collection. I have always felt the are colorful, and really speak to me. Since I had traveled in that day, and already attended another show, and it was an evening show I decided to wear my Prabal PJ suit from his most recent past collection.
Just prior to the runway show beginning I received an email. I have copied the whole script in its entirety below. I was profoundly touched by the message the team at Prabal Gurang had put together for their collection and the show. Their own words below most eloquently, and articulately describe their work and I will let it speak for itself.
I did love the touches around the runway. Spring Studios is a great venue, and I love when shows are there because the team there manages people in and out really well, however, it can be just a blank space. The PG team had brought in beautiful hanging floral arrangements, and I think it made the show feel cohesive to the theme that they added flags tucked in amongst the flowers.
WHO GETS TO BE AMERICAN? THE QUESTION PERMEATES THE AIR OF TODAY’S NATIONAL DISCUSSION, NOT TO MENTION MY OWN INTROSPECTIVE JOURNEY, AS I BEGAN TO CONCEIVE THE 10TH ANNIVERSARY COLLECTION OF MY BRAND 20 YEARS AFTER MOVING TO THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.
BORN IN SINGAPORE, I TRAVELED FROM NEPAL, TO INDIA, LONDON, AUSTRALIA, AND FINALLY ARRIVED IN NEW YORK CITY, AN IMMIGRANT IN SEARCH OF THE AMERICAN DREAM. TO ME, THIS COUNTRY HAS ALWAYS BEEN A BEACON OF HOPE WHERE ONE’S WILDEST AMBITIONS CAN COME TRUE, A MELTING POT THAT IS COLOURFUL, MULTICULTURAL, AND BEAUTIFUL. IN THE LAST FEW YEARS, INCITED BY THE DIVISIVE RHETORIC OF OUR CURRENT ADMINISTRATION, I’VE CONSIDERED THE MANY FACES OF AMERICA AND HOW WE SHOULD SEEK TO REDEFINE IT. I RECALL SITTING IN A BUSINESS MEETING, SPIRITEDLY CHALLENGING THIS VERY NOTION, AND BEING MET WITH A POINTED, “WELL, YOU DON’T LOOK AMERICAN, SO HOW CAN YOU DEFINE WHAT AMERICA IS?”
THIS IS ALL DEEPLY PERSONAL TO ME. THOUGH MY ROOTS LAY WITH MY FAMILY IN NEPAL, THIS COUNTRY IS MY HOME. AMERICA IS WHERE MY HEART IS. I AM AN AMERICAN. AS IMMIGRANTS CONTINUE TO BIRTH THIS “NEW AMERICA,” WE MUST REMEMBER ALL VERSIONS OF OUR HISTORY AND TAKE OWNERSHIP OF OUR PAST WHILE FORGING A NEW LEGACY. AMIDST THE DEEP WOUNDS THAT ARE SEVERING THE UNITY OF OUR COUNTRY, I CONTINUE TO SEEK THE AMERICA I CAME HERE TO BE A PART OF––THE AMERICA THAT I KNOW IS STILL THERE. AND SO, WITH THE SPRING 2020 COLLECTION, WE SEEK TO CELEBRATE HOPE, COURAGE, AND PRESENT AN ODE TO THE TRUE AMERICAN DREAM.
WHITE COTTON POPLIN SHIRTING IS REIMAGINED IN PLUNGING MOLDED SWEETHEART NECKLINES AND PAIRED WITH RAW DENIM CARGO PANTS, TOASTING CLASSIC AMERICANA STYLE, A MIX OF TAILORING AND GRIT. PRAGMATISM GIVES WAY TO FANTASY, AS UTILITARIAN JUMPSUITS AND PARKAS BLOOM IN AN AIRBRUSH CAMO ROSE PRINT, AND HAND-EMBROIDERED MANDALA FIREWORKS IGNITE ACROSS SUSTAINABLE HAND DYED CASHMERE KNITS AND EVENINGWEAR. DRESSES ARE PATCHWORKED WITH HAND-STITCHED REPURPOSED RECYCLED COTTON LACE AND EMBROIDERED SEQUINS. THE COLLECTION, WHICH IS 90% MADE LOCALLY IN NEW YORK CITY, IS A SHOW OF ARTISANAL COUTURE CELEBRATING OUR NATION’S CRAFTSMANSHIP.
A NOSTALGIC MOTIF, OUR NATIONAL FLOWER, THE ROSE, BLOSSOMS THROUGHOUT, IMBUING A SOFT PASTEL DREAMSCAPE, A FANTASTICAL PASSAGEWAY FOR REMEMBRANCE AND DISCOVERY. I REMINISCE ON GAZING THROUGH THE FOREIGN LENS OF MY CHILDHOOD, SPELLBOUND BY AMERICAN GLAMOUR. A FAMILY ON HOLIDAY ON THE GOLD COAST, OR A WOMAN CRADLING HER GOWN AS SHE RUSHES DOWN THE SUBWAY STEPS. EYELETS ARE HAND EMBROIDERED WITH SEQUIN FIREWORKS ON MINT SILK ORGANZA EXAGGERATED COCOON SLEEVES, AND SEERSUCKER IS TAILORED INTO CLASSIC SUITING AND SPORTSWEAR. THESE TEXTILES WEAVE TOGETHER, JUXTAPOSED IN UPCYCLED STRIKE-OFF PRINTS ON OUR SIGNATURE PATCHWORK CUTOUT DRESS. CHARLES JAMES ERA GOWNS EVOKE HIGH SOCIETY WITH FANFARE. A METALLIC BLUSH ROSE PRINT IS HAND BLOOMED ON A FIL-COUPÉ STRAPLESS DROP WAIST TIERED TEA LENGTH GOWN WITH A WATTEAU TRAIN. A VOLUMINOUS SILK ORGANZA EMPIRE GOWN, WITH PASTEL CAMOUFLAGE ROSE PRINT IS PAIRED WITH A MATCHING TECHNO BOLERO WITH HAND EMBROIDERED OSTRICH FEATHERS. AS A CAST OF 60 MODELS OF DIVERSE RACE, NATIONALITIES, AND DREAMS WALK TOGETHER, WE CELEBRATE COLOUR THROUGH THE SOFTENED LENS OF HOPE AND REBIRTH.
AMERICA IS THE SUM OF MANY IDEALS, FACES, IDENTITIES, AND OPINIONS. HERE WE FEEL IT WITH ALL OF OUR SENSES. A DELECTABLE COLOUR PALETTE STOKES ONE’S APPETITE FOR CHANGE, FIREWORKS EXPLODE WITH COLOURS AND TASAKI ATELIER JEWELLERY SPARKLES IN A DELIGHTFUL SHOW. LIMITED EDITION MIRON CROSBY X PRABAL GURUNG COWBOY BOOTS MADE IN TEXAS PARADE PAST WITH A HEARTY TWANG, AND TEXTURES FROM AROUND THE WORLD COAX US TO TOUCH THE FAR REACHES OF THE GLOBE FROM WHERE WE SIT.
SPECIAL THANK YOU TO JOSE ANTONIO VARGAS FOR YOUR GUIDANCE AND CONSULTATION, WE COULD NOT HAVE GOTTEN THIS DONE RIGHT WITHOUT YOU.
There were so many pieces from this show that I ordered and cannot wait to receive and then wear. I truly felt like each piece had such a statement, but would also work within my own life and ideas, and that they were wearable in everyday moments.
Some of my favorites were: